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Hyundai to feature facial recognition in electric vehicles

By Kim Hye-ran & Kim Tae-gyu, UPI News Korea
Hyundai to feature facial recognition in electric vehicles
The forthcoming GV 60, the first electric sports utility vehicle from Hyundai Motor’s premium brand Genesis, will include a new facial recognition system. Photo courtesy of Hyundai Motor

SEOUL, Sept. 17 (UPI) -- South Korean carmaker Hyundai Motor announced it will include a new facial recognition system in its forthcoming GV 60, the first electric sport utility vehicle from its Genesis brand.

The company said Thursday that drivers of the GV60 will be able to open its doors and start the engine with their biometric data -- no need for a smart key.

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Hyundai said it will be the first time the technology -- called Face Connect -- is used in a car. To use the feature, a GV60 owner would need to register his or her face in advance.

Users can register up to two faces in the system, which will encode their biometric data to prevent any data leaks. When the system recognizes a preregistered face, it will adjust the seating, head-up display, side mirrors and infotainment system for the driver.

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Hyundai said the model would hit the market late this year.

"Face Connect utilizes a near-infrared facial recognition technology, so it will be able to work in bad weather and at night. We also adopted deep learning technology," a Hyundai representative told UPI News Korea.

Experts say Face Connect is a technology to watch.

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"In the not-so-distant future, motorists will not have to carry keys. Instead, they will drive vehicles using their biometric information, including their face and fingerprints," Daelim University automotive professor Kim Pil-soo said in a phone interview.

"Face Connect will give a glimpse of what is in store for the automotive industry. If the technology succeeds, many other automakers are expected to follow suit," he said.

Global carmakers have increasingly invested in cutting-edge technologies for their automobiles.

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U.S.-based General Motors recently invested millions of dollars in radar software startup Oculii to meet the rising demand for automated driving features.

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